Gloria Steinem, Activist, Author, Kick Ass Feminist

By March 25, 2019 Authors, News

Gloria Steinem (March 25th 1934) is an American icon, feminist, journalist and social political activist who became recognised as the leader of the American feminist movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

From columnist for New York magazine to author of books such as My Life on the Road, Steinem has led a rich literary life and today we’re taking a look at her achievements.

Steinem’s childhood was far from traditional, born in Toledo, Ohio on March 25th, 1934 she spent much of her time travelling across America because her father was a travelling salesman. Because of this transient lifestyle, Steinem didn’t spend a full year in school until she was 11 when her parents divorced and she went to live with her mother. Even this didn’t bring her anything that resembled a settled life, as she spent many of her teen years caring for her mother who struggled with mental health problems.

When Steinem turned 19 she studied government at Smith College, a women’s liberal arts college in Massachusetts, at this time it was virtually unheard of for women to study politics.

After graduating Steinem travelled to India to participate in the Chester Bowles Fellowship, here she got her first taste of activism, taking part in non-violent protests against government policy. Upon her return to the US, Steinem started working as a freelance journalist and started working for Help! Magazine, a US satirical magazine as well as contributing to other outlets. Despite being a serious political writer, Gloria Steinem was forced into the lifestyle sections and women’s page as most didn’t accept articles by women on serious politics.

By her 30s Steinem had secured her place as journalist, feminist and political activist. In 1968, aged 34 she became a founding editor and political columnist for New York magazine and got progressively more and more involved as a public figure. This led to Steinem writing essays, leading protests, and even testifying before the US senate on behalf of the Equal Rights Amendment. In the 1970s Steinem founded the National Women’s Political Caucus, and the Ms Foundation for Women.

Today, Steinem is best known as an author and her first collection of essays, Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions was published in 1983, since then she has published nine books, her most recent, a memoir of her life My Life on the Road, published in 2015.

Today, Gloria Steinem is best known about the world for her contributions to the pursuit of equality and women’s rights. She sites on the board of numerous causes and organisations. In 2013, President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom and 83 she became an advisor for the Time’s Up Movement.

We think it’s safe to say that Gloria Steinem has led a pretty full and worthy life. Here are some book recommendations for those who want to read more!

New Daphne Du Maurier Poems Discovered in Photo Frame

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Daphne Du Maurier ‘s undiscovered poems have been found in an old photo frame containing a snapshot of the young author.

The photograph and frame were owned by Du Maurier’s close friend, Maureen Baker-Munton, who had kept over 40 years worth of correspondence between them. After Baker-Munton’s son put the collection up for auction the letters were discovered by Roddy Lloyd, the auctioneer responsible for selling the items.

The auctioneer was cataloguing the archive when he decided to look more closely at the photograph of young Du Maurier at the beach. “We were going through the last box of documents on my kitchen table, when for some reason I decided to take the picture out to have a better look. When I took it out of the frame, out popped these poems. It looks like they’re from around the 1920s.”

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Charlotte Brontë’s hair found in antique ring

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Charlotte Brontë’s hair has been found hidden inside an antique ring, according to experts.

The ring was brought to jewellery expert Geoffrey Munn on the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow by an unnamed woman who claimed it belonged to her late father-in-law.

The ring contains an inscription inside, which bears the name of the author, and the date of her death- 1855. The excited woman explained: “I’ve got goosebumps now thinking about it. It’s got a hinge on it, and inside there’s plaited hair, I think it may be the hair of Charlotte Brontë!”

Geoffrey Munn told the lucky Antiques Roadshow visitor that he had ‘very little reason to doubt’ the ring’s authenticity.

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The Brilliance of Kathy Acker

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Kathy Acker (18th April, 1947 – 30th November 1997) was an American experimental novelist, playwright, and sex-positive feminist writer who shook up the world with her street punk view of the world and her radical writings.

Born in New York City in 1947, Karen Lehman as she was born grew up feeling unloved by a hostile mother and unwanted by a father who abandoned her. Records show that Acker was born in 1947, but the Library of Congress has her birth as 1948 and most of the obituaries at the time of her death cited her birth as 1944.
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Hunter S. Thompson’s Cabin to be Available for Rental

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If you’re a fan of Hunter S. Thompson then you may have a passing internet in Owl Farm, the cabin home where the author and journalist is said to have written Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Until now the cabin has sat uninhabited, visitors unwelcome unless there is an event on in the cabin, but now Thompson’s widow, Anita has decided to make the cabin available to fans.

This isn’t going to be a standard Air BnB listing, the cabin will be available primarily for fans. The details are still being ironed out, but Anita Thompson announced on Facebook that “Our staff will do a light background check and welcome those who love Hunter’s work to be overnight guests at Owl Farm. The applications are open to the public for those who want to be part of the legacy and consist of a paragraph of why you would like to stay at Owl Farm, located between Woody Creek and Lenado. People have been asking for years to see Hunter’s Owl Farm, which is private property,” she continues. “I’ve finally prepared Hunter’s writer’s cabin for this purpose during this season.”

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Valerie Solanas, Author, Radical Feminist, Attempted Murderer

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Valerie Solanas (April 9th, 1936 – April 25th, 1988) was an American radical feminist, author of the SCUM Manifesto, and troubled individual. The Manifesto is one of the best known books in the radical feminist genre, but Solanas is best known for shooting Andy Warhol.

Born in New Jersey, Solanas had a turbulent upbringing, claiming her father regularly sexually abused her. Her parents divorced when she was young, but she also disliked her stepfather and soon descended into rebellion and truancy. After a difficult childhood, Solanas became homeless at fifteen, at seventeen she gave birth to a child who was removed from her care and adopted.

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10 Playful Postmodern Quotes from Donald Barthelme

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Donald Barthelme was an award-winning short story writer and novelist from Philadelphia.

Born in April 1931 to two academic and professional parents, Barthelme began writing as a teen for newspapers. He and his father had many arguments about what area of writing Donald was interested in, with particular disdain for Donald’s love for postmodern literature.

Aged 30, Barthelme had his first short story published while working as director of the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston. Eventually the writer went on to publish over 100 short stories. His strict postmodern style, spattered with non-sequiturs and playful use of language has created waves among both traditional and postmodern writers and critics.

Barthelme’s influences include Samuel Beckett, Franz Kafka, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. He was described in Time magazine  as an author with “Kafka’s purity of language and some of Beckett’s grim humour.”

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